Jun 15, 2017
The Unknown Might Be a Match

From the COLlive inbox: A 24-year-old Chabad woman has never been on a date. The reason: She's turned down for being "unfamiliar."

by Chana

This shidduch op-ed is not like the others on COLlive that address the emotional investment dating has and how to deal with the subsequent refusals. I wish I were able to write about such things.

The reason I can't is that I've never been on a date.

I am 24-years-old, live in a community where dating mainly happens when the girl travels out of town. Dating will involve a monetary expense and time-consuming. The upheaval it demands can't allow dating to be something so frequent.

But I am ready to travel. The problem is that there are no offers, no names, no ideas.

If you look at my resume, I am your typical girl who was studious in school and followed on to a seminary in Isreal. I then went straight to teaching and was hoping to continue sailing through the system to get married within the next following years.

That hasn't happened. My name has been suggested to many, but time and time again, I have been turned down.

My perception is that parents of boys enter the shidduch market with a predetermined result - and it's not just about getting their boy married. They already decided what type of girl and from what type of family and background their son needs.

Here's one example: After inquiring about a boy, the shadchan stated, "They're wealthy," implying that since my family isn't, the shidduch may not be compatible.

It often happens that after the girl has been given a suggestion and after having sent her profile, a quick response is followed from the boys side of "not shayach." There was clearly no effort made on the boy's side in pursuing the suggestion and calling the references.

Many times, the parents of boys are particular to see the girl's profile before sending their son's profile. Is it to gain some reassurance by a quick glance? Are parents looking to see if the girl has the qualities that are laudable in a potential wife? Are they checking into her Midos, her personality, and character traits?

Why not bypass the external factors of the unknown - an unfamiliar family name, what job the father has or difference in the background? Let's not halt after a quick scan at the profile or after reading the first lines.

Allow yourselves to look further, to take another moment and call a reference before making an assumption and turning it down.

You own it to your child not to be so judgemental.

Most Read Most Comments

Opinions and Comments
u should look around more and date online too and change your shadchan
everyone is looking for a good girl or boy but i do believe the boy is exist for you , just look for more options ....and please change the chadhan with zero data for you .....you r big now maybe move to the big city to find your beshert and register for all online jewish shiddush websites
(6/15/2017 11:12:41 PM)
c 1
yes totally agree! people should be able to look at resumes before mother's!
(6/15/2017 11:20:50 PM)
you're not alone
I went on my first date at 27 (and I live in one of the "hubs" so no travelling necessary). I'm sure you'll get many "there must be more to it" comments, and "if you haven't been on any dates there must be a bigger problem" but sometimes it's literally just the logistics. Not knowing enough people is a huge one. Not having involved parents is another. Some people find it easy, or at least doable, to advocate for themselves. For others it's impossible. I cannot do it. I cannot sell myself. I cannot call people and nudge them and beg for their help. I am naturally independent. I don't ask others for things, how can I ask for something so huge like this? I can't ask, no one's offering, and I can't do it myself. So I'm stuck. I have to figure out what my next step is. No solution, but commiserations.
(6/15/2017 11:29:14 PM)
Do yourself a favor
Move to crown heights. Then you won't be unknown.
(6/16/2017 12:11:53 AM)
From Down under
The only way my girls were able to be married was because I sent them away! Actually, I just realised that it was the same with my sons.Unless you live in a huge community , you need to travel
(6/16/2017 12:13:43 AM)
Boys should have the say
I feel like a lot more girls would be looked into because boys are more open minded than their mothers. A mother can easily say no to her sons bashert but if the boy would see his potential wife's profile, he would be interested in it.
(6/16/2017 1:24:34 AM)
To #4
I get so annoyed when I hear people say "if u want to get married, u have to move to Crown Heights". First of all does everyone get married that lives there?I know there are young women there who are just waiting(!) for their beshert. Why give up a good occupation, friends, family to be one of many in basements just "waiting". I do realize that young men also end up there for the same reason to find their beshert but it is sad that you can not just stay in your country if you are past 25 years because the system has failed you and the only answer is to travel and live in New York where u will hopefully(!) find your husband quickly. Also another thing that REALLY annoys me is that girls have to travel abroad to meet the boy/young man....why? I am sure the Rebbe said the boy should travel to the girl. Why has this changed. Girls also have good jobs and they can not just drop everything and go abroad, if this is the excuse the boy gives....I suppose it is because the boy knows if the girl does not want to travel there are girls hanging around Crown Heights he could meet
(6/16/2017 1:45:31 AM)
Come to CH
I know plenty of people that would date you.
(6/16/2017 1:48:49 AM)
speak to everyone
keep asking everyone you know if they know someone for you. Someone who knows you may have a suitable relative or friend. Also try to meet as many shadchanim as possible and leave them your resume and picture. You never know from where, from whom, he will come. You don't need to date many - just one, the right one. Good Luck!!
(6/16/2017 2:28:19 AM)
open to others
she needs to get on shiddach lists, (like the chicago shiddach group) where she will find profiles of many other 'no-name' boys. Their families will be more open. Or long-time BT boys. They too can be excellent boys, but face great stigma on the shiddach market. It depends what you are looking for. Boys from wealthy homes; boys with yichus.... they have literally dozens or hundreds of girls to choose from. So they begin by narrowing down names; who is the family. It is just a way of starting the selection process.
(6/16/2017 6:23:07 AM)
To #4
Crown heights is so huge now, i dont think someone will be known just by moving there and living with girls. And where will she eat shabbos if she doesn't have relatives?
(6/16/2017 6:33:34 AM)
So if someone can find out about this girl for me to see if shes interested in me ill be happy to date her
(6/16/2017 6:36:37 AM)
#4 response
I hear what you are saying, but just so you know I am 25 and moved to ch last year for this reason. All the problems you name are totally right, and it was a very difficult decision, but the fact is I started getting dates and much more on target suggestions, and shadchanim just started taking me more seriously. Is it fair or nice or even dignified? No, there is a huge problem. Do I have family here? No, and I often end up eating Shabbos meals in my basement. Am I happy here? Sometimes. But you gotta do what you gotta do, and it was the best move I ever made. However, I am the type who can at least push myself to call shadchanim and sell myself. You need someone to advocate for you, either yourself or someone else, or it's not really worth it.
(6/16/2017 7:36:42 AM)
especially since
some people from amazing families are the opposite of amazing
(6/16/2017 7:39:52 AM)
International shidduch group network

U CAN be empowered to get to the chuppah by joining the
Network: www.shidduchgroupnetwork.com. U/your mom can join a chapter where u live; if there is none yet, start one. Our approach is together to learn & follow the Rebbe's Torah directives for finding a shidduch, network w/one another & share ideas for shidduchim, daven for one another, etc., i.e., bring the mazel down to get to meet the right one @the right time! Hashem certainly HAS a shidduch for u--he's looking for u right now! Stay positive,
join our site: www.findyourbashert.com/gold member;
a shadchan will do the work for you! Put your faith in the Aibeshter, connect to our Rebbe and those in your local shidduch support group, and get your chassunah shoes ready!! For shidduch coaching/more info, please contact me: elana@shidduchgroupnetwork.com. Hatzlocha & b'soros tovos!
(6/16/2017 7:40:02 AM)
Don't Give Up
It's easy for me to say this, but I'm also single and 25 years old and I decided that I would not give up because if I do; do I really believe that Jewish marriage is divine?! there is someone out there for sure; maybe it's all just a hint to do things different maybe change shadchan, contact as many shadchanim as possible, or various events. lastly, you really don't want super judgemental people; that's all they are....no quality in there.
(6/16/2017 7:41:57 AM)
This is the best response to a posting I have read in while. Enuogh said!
(6/16/2017 8:12:11 AM)
Not everybody seems to know this but it's on the achraiyis of the boy to pay for the travelling for at least the first date.

My son moved to Crown Heights so he'd be in the center of things. When a girl is suggested to him even from Crown Heights he had to take into consideration renting a car for $50 so dates usually at least $75 depending on where he's going. He supports himself so he considers these things. When a girl is from out of town, even if she's willing to pay the cost of traveling, he isn't comfortable with that. It just isn't right unless she's coming into NY for some other reason. So, to be honest, neither he, nor we, can afford the expense of travel. On occasion the girl's family had offered to split the cost, as we have done for my daughter, but even then, it's still financially a strain. Traveling: at least $150, at least 2 dates: $150 = $300 minimum.
Do you know how many girls are suggested from in and out of town? Lots.

If we could write into the Rebbe like my husband did with me and get an answer that it's it wouldn't be a question, but nowadays...

My son says, "Look, I moved to NY so I'd be able to date. If a girl wants to date she might need to move here too."
He might have a point.
Btw, he also didn't get any dates until he moved to NY.
(6/16/2017 8:29:53 AM)
This isn't a Lubavitch issue
Jewish singles, regardless of affiliation, from smaller communities are always advised to move to a more major Jewish metropolis to meet other Jewish singles. Maybe we should reinstate Tu B'av, where eligible women parade down the street to be seen. There is a level of pragmatism that applies to the dating system. This issue isn't biased towards less known families, the reason why it may be easier for a girl from a more well known family to get a Shidduch while they are living out of town is because of the connectivity of these families, so they are more apt to receive unsolicited introductions. You don't need to move to NY because you are from an "unfamiliar" family, you may want to consider moving to a larger community to compensate for the lack of connectivity due to your "unfamiliar" family and generate more visibility.
(6/16/2017 8:56:15 AM)
A few comments
Dear Chana, please go to bashertnow.com today and register for free. Your profile and photo will be sent to over 250 shadchanim worldwide. Close to 400 of their members have gotten engaged/married in the past 2 years or so, and many shidduchim have come about through bashertnow itself. B"H I was zoche to make such a shidduch, for an out-of-town girl! Singles from the most far-flung places have gotten engaged through the online groups.

Please remember that there is a wedding invitation written in Shamayim with your name and your chosson's name on it, plus all the details of where and when you will get married. There are many more details written on it as well: exactly at what moment your chuppah will take place, exactly who you will dance with at each moment of the chassunah (since each and every attendee at a wedding has a soul connection to the chosson/kallah), which bakery will bake the rolls that will be served at the meal, which greens will decorate the meat platter... Hold onto this image in your mind -- and make as many keilim as possible for it to be brought down into reality!! Hashem will enable it all for you, and may it be sooner than you can imagine!!!

My "Heimishe" friend in Seagate couldn't marry off her kids, so their Rav suggested they move to Boro Park, since many BP families wanted to marry only a "local family." She hated Boro Park, but she sold her house and moved. Within one year, 3 kids were married B"H. Then she moved out of Boro Park. So it's a common problem.

The main thing is, let everyone find their bashert ASAP. Moshiach Now! Good Shabbos.
(6/16/2017 9:38:23 AM)
Know your child
So many people are looking for what they want and not what the child wants.
Know your child and know what they want. In the end of the day they are going to live with that person not you
(6/16/2017 10:00:36 AM)
Other ideas to meet?
Easy for me to say, I'm from CH but I disagree with the guy needeing to pay for traveling to see someone. Guys are ppl too, they work just as hard as us. I can only imigaine what my bank account would like like being them. Like someone said above, an average date costs abt $75-100.. if you go out 2/3 times (which is the average before saying no), he spent close to $300 if not more. How many girls do guys date a month? If he needs to travel to date you, honey his expense is tremendous.. if I were the guy I wouldn't either travel when I have 500 girls under my nose. If you live far you need to take it into consideration that you'll either have to pay for them to travel in or you'll have to move/travel.. it's reality.

Second thing, Idk what it's like living far but CH isn't any easier.. IMO we just need to Find new ways singles can meet .. I love the shabbos table idea.. but I'm a bit more open minded and I dont think ppl find it appropriate.. hopefully something will come up that will start working. In the mean time you're young, enjoy being single..
much luck!!
(6/16/2017 10:39:56 AM)
Well done. And appropriate thoughtful comments too.
The calibre of the comments responding to this post is definitely an upgrade. It must be a reflection on the writer. You wrote honestly and from your heart, and people answered you with heart. Harzlocha to you, and I hope you find your bashert soon!
(6/16/2017 11:08:50 AM)
No one calls references
Please don't take it personally. People don't want to talk to a young man or young women's friends. The friends are not a very reliable source of information! People do research by figuring out who else may have crossed paths with the person, at a particular school or in a particular city, whom they trust to tell the truth. People on your list reporting they never got a call doesn't mean that you are not being considered in a thoughtful way.
(6/16/2017 12:12:10 PM)
try donating to CSCVK
Devorah Benjamin goes once a month and davens at the Ohel for shidduchim for the donors. She also meets lots of families and knows who has kids in the parsha so she can sometimes suggest someone. Read the Rebbe's books on the subject of shidduchim because you might widen your own criteria based on that. Make sure that you have a mashpia who can tell you honestly if there is something that you need to focus on, work on, or find a husband who is compatible with. I am really surprised at how few people who are in shidduchim actually have a mashpia! Check your facebook page for any pics that would present you in less that a positive light. Some singles are turned down because they leave a trail of negative social media. I have met girls who want really frum boys but these girls are lax on tznius and therefore are not what the frum boys or their mothers, want.
(6/16/2017 12:41:25 PM)
mexico city
I'll date you I have no problem if you can fly here
(6/16/2017 1:12:00 PM)
Life isn't fair
If it's getting to too many years without being noticed, look for an opportunity in CH so you will be seen. Sorry you've had disappointment that may be unfair but best do what's productive for your future even if it requires giving in to terrorism (not literally of course)
(6/16/2017 1:17:33 PM)
If it is bashert, then why isn't it happening for so many youngsters, and after so much effort?
(6/16/2017 1:53:34 PM)
The problem is in Chabad jobs and chinuch and shlichus as well.
I am unable to get a decent chinuch position not because I am not qualified enough, but because I am a bal teshuva who does not have gezsha or a fancy Chabad father in law.

Schools look into the "last name" of who they want to hire.
Unfortunately, if you do not marry a special family, you will not get help in landing a "shlichus or a Chabad chinuch position.

(6/16/2017 2:11:19 PM)
Sitting in
Sitting in for a date is the easiest and cheapest way.
(6/16/2017 2:14:05 PM)
So beautiful
To read all the encouraging posts.
(6/16/2017 2:41:45 PM)
There are so many problems with the 'Frum' dating system.
And the powers that be, will not allow some of the worst ones, to be discussed, so they will never be solved.
(6/16/2017 3:22:56 PM)
Forget about guys your age
Look for someone over 40. Many more prospective matches.
(6/16/2017 3:45:55 PM)
come in to Crown Hts for shabbes and get to know people here ;-)
(6/16/2017 3:55:12 PM)
Yichus, rich, or works in chabad mosod
I am a baal Teshuva male. I had a very "painful" and difficult time in the Shidduch process. When I got a job as a rebbe at Oholie Torah, the shadchan I called so many time without any leads, said to me "now, you are hot on the market."
All of a sudden, girls were calling to go out, shadchans could not stop "helping" me.
ADVICE: Get a job as an assistant principal at Bais Rivkah, get rich, or change your last name to a known Chabad name.

Seriously speaking, I found the love of my life on a frum dating site, and I didn't ask even 1 reference about her. Any questions I had, I asked her directly.
Oh yeah, most importantly, I didn't ask a Mashpia what he thinks.

Good luck, you sound like a wonderful person.
(6/16/2017 3:56:23 PM)
Boy 27
I'm not from ch I'm from a chassidic family I'm seeing girls for a couple of years already and I get the same stupid answer from the Shadchan the girl said very nice boy but not for me most of the girls 25 above have their mind set what they want the way I see it., Why is it like this
(6/16/2017 4:00:52 PM)
I feel you
I understand you 100%. The system is corrupt, unless your family has money or is well known, no suggestions will come your way.
There needs to be a system where shadchanim actually care about you and you don't have to run after them with their super busy schedule and make you feel as if they are doing your the biggest favor ever!
But don't give up, call up every single shadchan, ask around, go on whatsaap groups and websites, put your name out there. Nudge them, thats the way it works. Yes, its annoying to feel like your a furniture being passed around, but as of now the system doesn't give us more of a choice.
Good luck!
(6/16/2017 5:47:57 PM)
I wish there was just a website
Of video's and resumes. Each one could choose to find out more by a shaddchin getting involved. As in push interested and a shaddchin starts getting the ball rolling. A lot more good shidduchim will happen.
(6/16/2017 6:36:56 PM)
Paying towards the flight of the girl
Im a boy 28 dated quite a few girls and i paid by myself for every single date i went on. Not once did a girl offer to split the cost of dating, if i went out with a girl 5 times comes out to be around 400$, i didnt expect them to offer, because the way ot works by us is the boy pays for the date. i have givven up my true ambition working on shlichus and moved to crown heights to find my bashert. I feel in a certaim way expect that back so to me if a girl lives out of town dont expect me to travelto where to live or even to pay for your travel fees. Just like i gave up everything to be in crown heights, you can expect that if a name is suggested from out of town i would Iprobably so no. Why because there is plenty of suggestions here so if you want to date meet me in crown heights. Also doing resarch is very important. I have sisters. If they know the girl and dont think it will work i would get back to the shaddchan straight away saying its not a good idea
(6/16/2017 6:50:57 PM)
I really hesitate to open up this can of worms and I know there will be a big backlash from it.

I have not seen your picture, nor do I know what you look like. You may be tall, thin and beautiful. But you might not be.

Back in the day, thirty five years ago, when I got married, there were no profiles and there were certainly no pictures.

A girl who was chubby had a fighting chance because the boy would meet her before seeing her picture. He could be enamoured by a girl's personality and put her looks aside.
Unfortunately, the same is not true today.

I once tried to reht a shidduch to the mother of a very, very big boy and the mother said, "she's fat!!" . Well so was her son, but she would not go for it.
Today, when I see a large or obese girl, I want to tell her to go on a diet. There are a lot of beautiful, talented and thin girls out there. Why go for a chubby girl?
If you have pimples, get rid of them.
If your bad hair, fix it.
If you have bushy eyebrows, wax them.
I know that these are all chitzonistic things that should not matter but in today's day and age, boys see all too much and they are aware of all too much.

One of my son's married a bigger girl, but he met her at a shabbos table and they really hit it off. Had he seen her picture, I'm not sure that he would have agreed to meet her, she has a beautiful face but was really quite chubby and continues to struggle with her weight.
Another son of mine see a pic of a chubby girl and say's "Sorry, not for me".
I cannot emphasize enough that unfortunately, a girl has look her absolute best.

I wish you hatzlacha raba and hope that all singles find their
zivug quickly and are zoche to build a bayis neaman b'Yisroel.
(6/17/2017 3:49:50 PM)
Agree dating v expensive
In the past I have offered our fam car to guys dating. I have told my children if they have friend dating and need a car we can lend ours.It defrays the cost. All we ask is that they have a license and are responsible. We don't need to know who they are etc just a place we leave car & keys and where to drop it off. We leave gas for them too.
I am sure many others would do the same. Guys when dating and can't afford car rentals try asking people who you eat shsbbos meals at or friends or shadchan if they can suggest a person to borrow car from.
Just an idea...
(6/17/2017 10:56:58 PM)
I want to help this girl
Contact me rivkah06@gmail.com
or whatsapp 3475593996
Put a subject Urgent shidduch help
(6/17/2017 11:12:59 PM)
Experienced girl in looking and finding
To many comments above:
1) there is someone up there for you
2) discuss each individual case with your parents and Mashpia
3) some people are worth traveling for others are not
4) if people share expense it is a possibility if not it brings you closer to a shidduch
5) I remember investing 2000 into meeting someone and preparing and traveling, almost worked out, but that shidduch brought me so much closer to my husband
Why? It taught me a lesson on what is important
(6/17/2017 11:17:16 PM)
There is no system
I hate to break it to you but there is no system once you're out of the system. It's each man (or woman) for him/herself. Just as you would actively look for a job you need to actually look for your shiduch. And as others mentioned it might pay to go somewhere there are more possible options instead of expecting someone to travel to you without having ever met you.
(6/18/2017 1:13:17 AM)
have bitachon
and give tzedaka to R' Meir Baal Hanes and you will find your missing match. Amen!
(6/18/2017 1:46:07 AM)
You will find your bashert. These guys aren't it, apparently, and these shadchanim are not the ones who will help.

Look in other areas, look for a different type, or something. One day he will fall into your lap and that will be it. And you know, it may not even be through a shadchan.
(6/18/2017 12:15:04 PM)
To #40
Right, and that's why we're seeing so many divorces today. When you look at chitzonius and put pnimiyus second, that's what happens. More older singles, more divorces.
(6/18/2017 12:19:56 PM)
Rav K
"Own"? Or "owe"? Own implies ownership allowing to freely do as one pleases, while "owe" is quite the opposite, an obligation to another.
(6/18/2017 12:25:00 PM)
It's a problem
Most of the people who marry young are from families who have aggressive parents pulling strings. Parents who are quiet and laid back will find their kids having difficulty getting married. If you look at communities like Skver and monroe, everyone gets married. In more modern circles it's more difficult. Money is not the answer. I myself when I was 23 was a millionaire and did not get any dates. I was a tall handsome heimish rich easy going guy with NO dates. You have to be in a community that's tightly knit to get a date. Girls living in out of town areas like north Miami beach will have difficulty getting dates. It's a serious problem. Also kids from divorced homes have difficulty. What I recommend is every girl get more exposure to families and aim for what they really want. Daven like crazy and do Chesed. You never know which patient in a nursing home or hospital has a grandchild or relative in shidduchim.
(6/18/2017 2:15:20 PM)
Think outside the box
Know that your bershert is looking for you just as you are looking for him.
Don't limit yourself to shadchanim. My kids found their bershert through suggestions from friends. Try all avenues, friends, frum websites, other shules etc. And remember the most important thing of all - don't limit Hashem as to what package your bershert will come in. Many mothers tell me they want for their children looks, tall, wealthy, skinny, dress sense etc etc. This is the surest way NOT to find your true 100% bershert. Many years ago now,when I finally met my husband after much previous dating, when I was a little older, I knew straight away he was my full bershert, but I was surprised that superficially he didn't match the profile I had been looking for and I remember thinking oh so you are what my bershert looks like. Also, don't put too much emphasis on the references. Speak to someone who knows them whom you trust about the really important character traits that matter to you. That's what I did for my kids - I didn't spend hours on references. Marriage is a dynamic entity of growth. During the dating you can find out much more directly from your conversations with them.
Most importantly put your faith in Hashem. Keep davening and writing to the Rebbe and stay positive. Visualise yourself getting married.
I wish you much hatzlacha - may you meet him very soon - he will be one lucky boy :)
(6/18/2017 10:55:30 PM)
Great Point
Gret point, however due to sites like FindYourBashert.com we were able to marry off our son who was also seemingly "unknown" as they have such a broad network.
(6/19/2017 11:24:54 AM)
Wake up And make a phone call or two
I understand your frustration but you must understand a effort needs to be made on your side as well. Meaning: if there is a boy that you feel would be a good husband for you, you shouldn't sit back and hope he might answer an email or two. No! Make a phone call find out who he is and who knows and respects, then get those people to vouch for you. The fact that you don't have a big name in chabad doesn't mean you aren't important, it just means you are unfamiliar. Think in the shoes of the guy wanna date, he has no clue who you are or what you're really like, so he would just take the easy option of going with someone he does recognize. Be a go getter!
(6/20/2017 8:17:17 AM)
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